• Sophia Webber

Gym Memberships - which one is for you?

With thousands of gyms up and down the country, how do you decide which suits you, your goals, your lifestyle and your budget the best?

There are approximately 8,000 health and fitness clubs in the United Kingdom and with the lockdown restrictions, this means approximately 10.4 million memberships have been affected in one way or the other.


It's not only the members who are being affected but this £8bn-a-year industry, that employs close to 190,000 people, has had to navigate through greatly challenging circumstances.


BUT! We have a light.....and it's bright and we can see the end of the tunnel folks!


Over the past year, we've seen some great initiatives with some gyms taking the bold step to totally freeze, pause or reduce monthly payments. Others have pivoted to on-line / virtually hosted classes. Not entirely suitable for everyone but the health and fitness industry has been as tenacious as any industry and with the new year resolution "season" there isn't a better time to re-evaluate which gym group / chain or health & wellness club really suits your needs.


We cover the basics here lumped into three main categories; Functional & Flexible, Mid to high end and Luxury. The most important thing is to find a gym, contractual terms and budget that really works for YOU! Let's Go Champ!

The functional, budget and contractual friendly....


PureGym



Find your nearest here:


Monthly starting price: From £9.99

Joining fee: £14.99


Pros:

  • No contract, you can cancel at any time.

  • Open 24/7 (when they’re allowed!)

Cons:

  • No swimming pool or spa facilities.


This massive gym chain has over 260 locations and more openings coming up too! A great option if you work unsociable hours as they’re open 24/7 and as it’s a cheap option, perfect for students too.

The Gym Group



Find your nearest here:


Monthly starting price: From £15.99

Joining fee: From nothing!


Pros:

  • No contract, you can cancel at any time.

  • Open 24/7 (when they’re allowed!)

Cons:

  • No swimming pool or spa facilities.

The Gym Group have some great membership options, such as student memberships and different tiers of how many benefits you get, such as bring a friend.

Mid Range to High-End Gyms....


Virgin Active


Find your nearest here:


Monthly starting price: From £80

Joining fee: From nothing!


Pros:

  • Gym, Swimming Pool, Studio and Cycle Studios.

  • Spa, Physio and Personal Trainers on site.


Cons:

  • More expensive membership.


Virgin Active are a well-established brand, which offers you more than just equipment. They have the support in place for an all-round spot for working out, relaxing in a sauna or visiting the physiotherapist.

David Lloyd



Find your nearest here:


Monthly starting price: From £66

Joining fee: From Nothing!


Pros:

  • Great for families.

  • Gym, Spa, Swimming, Tennis, Restaurants and more.

Cons:

  • High-end pricing for memberships.


David Lloyd have the most facilities on offer as well as being family-friendly! You can come to relax in the hot tub to swinging your racket on their tennis courts they have it all

Nuffield Health



Find your nearest here:

Monthly starting price: From £55

Joining fee: From nothing!


Pros:

  • Gym, Personal Training, Physio, Nutritional Therapy.

  • Day nursery

Cons:

  • Ties you into contracts.


Another great family-friendly option with their nursery, as well as having some great equipment and swimming pools and more on-site. Found up and down the country, it is likely you’ll find one near you.

Luxury London Gyms


Equinox - Kensington, St James & Bishopsgate



See locations here:


Monthly starting price: From £215+

Joining fee: £2,000


Pros:

  • Gym, strength and cardio training studios, a private Pilates studio, a regeneration room, a cafe and lounge, a steam room, and a Spa. Cycling and Pilates studios

Cons:

  • High-end pricing for memberships.


Swanky US gym chain Equinox found its first UK home on Kensington High Street back in 2012, with the second following in St James’ a few years later and a third recently opened in Bishopsgate. The Kensington club resembles a kind of luxury fitness playground, with a huge open-plan gym housed beneath a gleaming domed skylight, boasting every piece of equipment under the sun available for members to peruse at their leisure.

Third Space



See locations here:


Monthly starting price: From £165 to £205

Joining fee: £100 and includes 2 x 1hr sessions with a Trainer!


Pros:

  • Gym, strength and cardio training, swimming pool, climbing wall. Dance, combat, mind & body classes. Cycling and Pilates studios

Cons:

  • High-end pricing for memberships.


"In our glorious, maddening city, your workout can be the difference between a good day and bad. Third Space are London’s luxury health clubs; individual in style, bound by a common philosophy: to provide outstanding fitness spaces that members feel are their own."

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